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Archive for the ‘Java’ Category

Useful options running “mvn test”

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There are some very useful command line options you can specify when executing maven tests:

-Dtest=[testname], this allows selective execution of unit tests, instead of running them all. [testname] might be full class name, class name without package, or even wildcard.

-Dsurefire.useFile=false, this will force surefire plugin to write failing test info to stdout instead of file in target/surefire-reports/. Can be a huge time saver.

Written by isaaclevin

January 28, 2011 at 12:58 pm

Posted in Java

Control Log4j message timezone

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If your server is running in one timezone, but you want to have log messages be printed using different timezone, here is a simple solution:

  1. Add log4j extras to project classpath (maven GAV is log4j:apache-log4j-extras:1.0)
  2. In log4j.xml use EnhancedPatternLayout, specifying required timezone for logging purposes (see example below for EST TZ)
<appender name="CONSOLE" class="org.apache.log4j.ConsoleAppender">
    <param name="Threshold" value="TRACE" />
    <layout class="org.apache.log4j.EnhancedPatternLayout">
        <param name="ConversionPattern" value="%d{ISO8601}{EST} %-5p [%t][%c:%M(%L)] %m%n" />

In this example, log messages will be printed using EST regardless of your server timezone.

Written by isaaclevin

December 27, 2010 at 3:23 pm

Posted in Java

Setting timeout on Axis WebService calls

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In several projects we participated, there was a need to call external Web Services using Java classes generated by wsdl2java Axis tool (or wsdl2java goal of axistools-maven-plugin).

Sometimes these external systems that exposed Web Services experienced high load, slow database and other factors, which caused our calls to them to take outrageously long time before the response have been received.
So, we had to introduce timeouts and handle such calls as errors.

Looking into Axis documentation we found that there is a wsdl2java “timeout” parameter available in both command line tool and via maven plugin. However setting this parameter had no effect, our calls were still hanging indefinitely. It’s not even clear from the documentation if this timeout is applied to webservice call or to execution of wsdl2java itself.

Anyways to have a timeout on webservice call the one must be set on instance of org.apache.axis.client.Call prior to calling invoke(). But creation of Call instance and setting of all its properties is done from Axis generated code and all your changes there will be overwritten on next wsdl2java run.

The solution is to set timeout property on the class that extends org.apache.axis.client.Stub, it’s Axis generated class and would be called something like MyWebServicePort_PortType. If timeout on Call is not set it uses the value from Stub.
This solution is also much more flexible, because now you can set different timeouts on various calls depending on your business logic.

Written by isaaclevin

December 17, 2010 at 11:02 am

Posted in Java

Tagged with , , ,

Finding unused code in Java projects

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In many projects, especially big ones, developed over several years, there is a lot unused code. Cleaning up projects and deleting such unused code is important.

Unfortunately all above methods will mark code invoked by reflection (e.g. using IoC container such as Spring) as unused. At the same time garbage code that was left behind together with its unit test won’t be detected.

I see only one way to detect such obsolete code – run the system for a while through all typical scenarios and collect statistics on loaded classes, invoked methods, etc. Of course report generated using this technique can be only considered as a hint and manual verification is required.
Proper solution should probably be done using AOP, instrumenting code either during compile or load time. There is however quick and dirty way that archives similar results.

  1. Run your app with -verbose:class option (send standard output to file in addition to console using | tee <filename>)
    $ export MAVEN_OPTS="$MAVEN_OPTS -verbose:class"
    $ mvn clean jetty:run | tee jetty.log
  2. Execute all typical scenarios of your application
  3. From generated log file create sorted list of your project classes used in executed scenarios:
    $ grep "\[Loaded.*com.jpragma" jetty.log | awk '{print $2}' | sort | uniq -u > loaded_classes.txt
  4. Create sorted list of your compiled project classes:
    $ find target/classes/ -name *.class | sed 's/target\/classes\/\///g' \
    | sed 's/.class//g' | tr -s '/' '.' \
    | sort > declared_classes.txt
  5. Compare two txt files finding all classes that declared but not used:
    $ diff loaded_classes.txt declared_classes.txt | grep ">"

Written by isaaclevin

February 14, 2010 at 7:24 pm

Posted in Java

Combined Java+Flex project with hot redeployment

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In small applications it makes sense to combine Java and Flex code under same project. I’m a big fan of maven and one of my favorite maven plugins is embedded jetty container. This plugin runs jetty directly from maven and supports automatic monitoring and redeployment of java classes and resources. I thought it would be nice to run Java+Flex projects in the same way and have updated SWF file instantly available in the browser immediately after Flex Builder compiles it.

You can find step-by-step instructions on such project set up on my wiki:

Written by isaaclevin

February 14, 2010 at 7:16 pm

Posted in Flex, Java

Using Groovy in JMeter

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Note: This is a copy from my old blog posted in 2007. Some things mentioned here have been changed since then.

Groovy is a great scripting language intimately integrated with Java. Being able to leverage any code written in Java and at the same time having all the advantages of dynamic programming language, makes it an excellent choice for tasks such as file management, build systems and testing.

JMeter is an open source load test tool. It supports many protocols (HTTP, FTP, JMS and others) out-of-the-box.

Many times I found myself in situation when I wanted to run load test against stand-alone Java components or against an application that uses proprietary binary TCP based protocol. Groovy would be an excellent choice for this task. Some work on integrating JMeter and Groovy was done by Alexandru Popescu, however the project is not available to the public yet. Then I discovered that there is an indirect support for groovy in JMeter itself. JMeter supports BSF, which is an abstraction layer on top of many scripting languages including groovy. BSF distribution that comes with JMeter actually has some glitch in groovy support, but after upgrading to the latest version of bsf.jar it was very easy to start writing JMeter scripts in groovy.

Here the steps I followed:

  1. download latest groovy binaries from
  2. copy groovy-all-1.0.jar to jmeter/lib directory
  3. download latest bsf binaries from (I was using version 2.4.0)
  4. replace bsf-2.3.0.jar in jmeter/lib with bsf.jar from the version you just downloaded
  5. start jmeter
  6. create BSF Sampler and specify “groovy” as a scripting language (see screenshot below)
  7. type your groovy script and run it

This method is far from being perfect. It actually monitors how much time it takes to execute the script itself, but in most cases you’d like to specify exactly when to start counting execution time [results.sampleStart(); results.samplePause(); results.sampleResume(); results.sampleEnd();]
I hope Alexandru will make his project available soon, or may be I’ll find some time to create more sophisticated JMeter Groovy plug-in.

Another issue is how to transfer data between several scripts. Let’s say you’d like to create 1st script that establishes TCP connection; 2nd that sends proprietary login message and gets back some security token; 3rd that sends some business message (using the same TCP connection and providing the token) and 4th that just disconnects. How to transfer Socket and Token objects between scripts? Well, you can use ThreadLocal. Following code snippet defines ThreadLocalStorage class that can be used from the scripts (isn’t it great that you can just call Java from Groovy?) to save and retrieve any data:

package com.jpragma.utils;

import java.util.HashMap;

public class ThreadLocalStorage {
  private static ThreadLocal storage = new ThreadLocal() {
    protected Object initialValue() {
      return new HashMap();
  public static Object get(String name) {
    HashMap vars = (HashMap) storage.get();
    return vars.get(name);
  public static void set(String name, Object value) {
    HashMap vars = (HashMap) storage.get();
    vars.put(name, value);

Just package it as a jar file and put into jmeter/lib directory. Now you can write your scripts like this:


import com.jpragma.utils.ThreadLocalStorage

def socket = new Socket("localhost", 18012);
def iStream = new DataInputStream(socket.getInputStream());
def oStream = new DataOutputStream(socket.getOutputStream());

ThreadLocalStorage.set('mySocket', socket)
ThreadLocalStorage.set('myInStream', iStream)
ThreadLocalStorage.set('myOutStream', oStream)

return "success"

Echo Message

import com.jpragma.utils.ThreadLocalStorage

def iStream = ThreadLocalStorage.get('myInStream')
def oStream = ThreadLocalStorage.get('myOutStream')

def str = "My String"

def msgSize = iStream.readInt()
def buf = new byte[msgSize]
def responseStr = new String(buf)

if (str == responseStr)
    return "success"
    return "failure"


import com.jpragma.utils.ThreadLocalStorage

def socket = ThreadLocalStorage.get('mySocket')
if (socket != null) {
return "success"

Written by isaaclevin

February 14, 2010 at 7:12 pm

Posted in Java